Cracking jokes in inappropriate settings makes punch lines about 20 times funnier, no fail. Now I don’t condone this behaviour, and I certainly don’t suggest that you set up a mic and do stand up at Ethel’s funeral. That’s just crass. But there are always those occasions when something amusing happens and it’s just not appropriate to laugh, making that little amusing something uproariously funny.
This happened at my Grandma Toth’s funeral. Before you judge me and condemn me as a terrible granddaughter, please hear me out. The eulogy was a bit non-traditional – in it my parents just told a whole bunch of anecdotes that made Grandma the special lady that she was. And that lady was a hilarious one. From throwing shoes through screen doors, having missed her kid’s head, to learning to drive and steering the car straight into a ditch the first time on the road, to calling everybody a simple-minded fool, she did some hilarious things. Her antics on the Isle Man growing up are the most hilarious. The Isle of Man is an island between England and Ireland, where The Waking of Ned Devine was filmed. I’m not surprised that you haven’t heard of it. Anyways, when Grandma was growing up her siblings used to tie a rope around her waist and dangle her over the edge of a cliff face so she collect seagull eggs and then they would go and sell them to the Chinese restaurant. The thought of Grandma dangling upside down, beating off seagulls as she stole their eggs is hilarious to me. What’s more hilarious to me is that the Chinese restaurant bought and served these eggs. That’s all kinds of wrong and awful. When my parents told this story all of my cousins and aunts and uncles laughed so hard. It was the I-can’t-control-this-half-crying-half-laughing sort of laugh. Everybody else looked at us like we were clinically insane. We are a bit.
This also happens to Hilary and I sometimes in church. You’re not supposed to burst out in raucous laughter in church – that’s disrespectful. But one time my brother was asked to read a scripture and he actually said “Jedus” instead of Jesus. Even if you’re not familiar with Christianity you have to know that the son of God was not named Jedus. Nobody is.
I feel like I would make a terrible Presidential candidate, not only for the reasons I’ve previously outlined, but because I would be cracking up constantly. Photo op at an orphanage where I hand out soup to the needy? Yup, I’d be laughing at how chubby a baby is (seriously, chubby babies just crack me up) and people would be horrified. In debate over whether or not free healthcare is actually communism? (It’s not p.s.) I’d be peeing myself over a hilarious unibrow in the front row. There’s no need for unibrows so I find them hysterical. The American public would think that I’m just not taking things seriously. And they would be right.